ErynRNY

Sick of Justifying My Diet

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I'm in the midst of my 2nd Whole30 and most people around me have been very supportive. I have't lost as much weight as I hoped but in general I feel great and think that feeling great is worth so much more than quick weight loss. I know it will come off slowly but surely.

 

Being at work is hard sometimes because people bring in all sorts of food and goodies to share....we all know how that goes! But, I am staying strong and sticking to my guns! I am just amazed though at how insensitive some people can be and I know I shouldn't let one person get to me but I am so angry right now that I can spit nails!!! 

 

One of my co-workers brought in bagels this morning and I was so tempted, but I refrained from eating one and thanked her anyway. She totally understood. Another co-worker was standing nearby and heard me saying that I was on my Whole30 and not eating bread, grains, etc. As a matter of fact, I mentioned that I am pretty much a carb addict and that once I eat something like a bagel, I usually spiral out of control. With that, he picks up a bagel and starts waving it in front of me, dancing around with it, and basically taunting me with it. This is a grown man, mind you. He is kind of like the office clown, always joking and laughing, and I know he was not deliberately trying to be malicious so I laughed it off and I thought that was it. A little while later we were all gathering in the conference room for a meeting.....I had gone in and put my laptop down on the table and ran back out to grab some water. When I returned the whole bag of bagels was on the table in front of my chair. He had put it there as a joke, but I got really upset and basically told him this isn't funny anymore. It just made me feel really bad. 

 

Sorry for the long winded story, but I had to vent to other people who are in the same boat I am. Has anyone else experienced people being really weird about your food choices? 

 

 

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Yes - some people are just insensitive brats. (I'm being kind)  I'm pretty much paleo now most of the time - and have been for a while.  There are those who still choose to give me a hard time, everything from: it's all in my head, or insist I'm just having a "placebo effect"  (yeah - don't get me started on THAT one)

 

Not only do they not understand the inner struggles with food, but what they don't get is that certain foods are down right unhealthy for our bodies and they are encouraging us to get sick.

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I hate when people think they're funny when they really aren't.  Sounds like you really kept your compusure though! If that happened to me - especially in the middle of a whole30 when I might be more sensitive about food than usual - I might have either cried or yelled at him and neither would be a good option at work!

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A lot of the comments in that thread are really funny.  Others strike me as... overly sensitive?  Arrogant?  I'm not sure.  Usually (not always, but usually) when people joke about a person's diet, it's just that.  A joke.  An attempt to be lighthearted and connect to someone via humor.  I think we do ourselves a disservice when we get defensive, go on the offensive about "frankenfood" (you don't want them to judge you? don't judge them!), or otherwise take it personally.  

 

My vote? Own your "weird" eating habits (to the vast majority of people, this IS a weird way to eat!) and try to keep a sense of humor about it.

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Wow, what an ass.

 

My husband wanted me to try some Dark Chocolate Almond Milk he picked up and I said no thanks.  He said told me that 1 sip wouldn't hurt and I said I've gone 10 days without sugars and I know there's sugar in there.  He was huffy about it (and obviously not W30-ing himself) but I need to stick to my guns.

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I feel your frustration... I am the "weird" girl that eats only grass.  Ha! If they only knew.  I get teased and picked on a lot.  I can handle it most of the time, depending on my mood and how much has been thrown at me lately.  I get snippy when they make a huge deal about it! I don't make of them for their food, so they shouldn't mine.  Hopefully they are just jealous! :D

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I tell people I'm on an elimination diet to identify some food sensitivities, and it's not yet time to start addding food groups back in. I've never had anyone argue with that, especially when I tell them it's working well, the problems have gone away for now, and I'll figure out what's causing them as soon as I'm able to add back food groups.

Wonder if he'd leave sugar on a diabetic's chair, or a jar of JIF on the chair of someone who has peanut allergies? What a buffoon...

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Thanks everyone!! Glad to know I'm not the only one getting made fun of for my food choices. Usually I'm not sensitive about it, but something about this particular situation just set me off.

almondjoyless, you are so right about not going on the offensive about frankenfood....I try not to judge what other people are eating, no matter how bad it is for their health. After all, in the past, I've eaten the same frankenfood they're eating. If someone asks, I will explain to them the benefits of eating grass fed and pastured animals, organic fruits & veggies, and healthy fats, but I certainly don't criticize their poor food choices or give unsolicited advice. I know people who do that all the time and I find it kind of obnoxious.

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Its funny, I work with a lot of much younger people and when I go into the break room to microwave my lunch (usually some kind of stew that I made at home), I see them with either fast food, or heating up frozen foods like lean cuisine or some other 'healthy lunch' full of carbs. Many are vegetarians. But every time my food heats up, most of them say 'wow, that smells good! What is it" I usually answer 'real food'.

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ErynRNY I am sorry that some people are insensitive. Unfortunately this is a common thing I face at work in particular and people in some of my social groups that dont understand.  I have stopped explaining my food choices. 

Stick to your guns. and remember that the way people react about your food choices has a lot to do with how insecure they are about their own sense of control and strength. You are doing great. well done for resisting temptation. 

 

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"I usually answer 'real food'."

 

Okay, this is gonna make it sound like I'm picking on Bet, and I really don't intend to.  But this is a great example of the kind of comment I'm talking about, because it subtly insults other people's food choices and implies that your eating choices are superior to theirs.  A frozen meal IS real food.  It's not *whole* food, or the healthiest food, but it IS food.  You may believe your eating habits are superior, and that's fine.  I do too.  But these are the kind of comments that will cause others to judge you back.  A more productive response might be, "it's beef stew!  I made it from scratch and it was really easy.  Let me know if you want a recipe!"

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I'm doing the whole30 with my sister. So I just use the excuse "I promised my sister" if someone offers me something that's not compliant. Even before starting the Whole30, I've been made fun of for what and how I eat. (Yes, even by my mother). I do my best to just ignore it, but it can get really annoying.

 

I'm also known as "the workout nut" at work, so that kinda helps. Most people understand that by eating the way I do, it helps fuel my performance.

 

That doesn't stop the "you really like to eat vegetables!" comments I get. Or the "you eat like that for every meal?!?" Sometimes I get comments envious of my food choices and I'm always happy to share my ideas for quick meal prep or easy things to bring to work. Sometimes your own choices can help positively affect others!

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In the last few weeks, some of my co-workers have decided to complain - not to my face, mind you, but I've inferred from things I've overheard - about how my meals smell when I cook them in the breakroom microwave. My breakfast usually is a "hash" (like in the Success Guide) of whatever ground meat seems good - venison some weekends, ground chicken or turkey on others - plus whatever veggies are in my organic produce box. Lately, it's been a lot of cabbage, which I love, and I always add kale. And I guess they don't like the way that smells. I can't have a microwave in my office, so I don't have a lot of choices.

 

I've refrained from telling them how nauseous it makes ME to smell food from McDonald's and the garbage they sell in the vending machines. Instead, I wipe out the microwave and then spray freshener after I'm done. If they don't like the smell of THAT, that's too darned bad. It's a shame when the smell of frankenfood is preferred over the smell of the real thing.

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"I usually answer 'real food'."

 

Okay, this is gonna make it sound like I'm picking on Bet, and I really don't intend to.  But this is a great example of the kind of comment I'm talking about, because it subtly insults other people's food choices and implies that your eating choices are superior to theirs.  A frozen meal IS real food.  It's not *whole* food, or the healthiest food, but it IS food.  You may believe your eating habits are superior, and that's fine.  I do too.  But these are the kind of comments that will cause others to judge you back.  A more productive response might be, "it's beef stew!  I made it from scratch and it was really easy.  Let me know if you want a recipe!"

 

 

It's not real food. Even the 'healthiest' processed foods are full of artificial ingredients that can have an adverse effect on you, especially if you eat them all the time. I know because that is what I used to eat before and why I was so sick. Others may judge me, I don't really care. But we have to have a 'come to Jesus' movement in this country about food. Our 'food' is making us sick, and trying to be politically correct about people's food choices is harming them, IMO.

 

I don't say it in a snarky way, I say it's real food that I made myself. Some of these kids have no concept of what that means. And I have told a few that ask how easy it is to make. I did convince one person to make bone broth because he asked me what I 'bought' to put in the stew to make it smell so good. He was amazed that it wasn't something in a jar that I bought at the store.

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I've refrained from telling them how nauseous it makes ME to smell food from McDonald's and the garbage they sell in the vending machines. Instead, I wipe out the microwave and then spray freshener after I'm done. If they don't like the smell of THAT, that's too darned bad. It's a shame when the smell of frankenfood is preferred over the smell of the real thing.

 

Ugh, I can't stand the smell of microwave popcorn, and it's so bad for you. I also can't stand the smell of pizza anymore, the 'everything' pizza that has all that stuff on it. We also have free lunch Friday here and it's always something Mexican or Chinese or some other food. And I go in there and heat up my food and someone always comments 'you wouldn't rather have the (whatever that is). Maybe I'm just too jaded because I was sick for so long and now I can't look or smell certain foods because it triggers actual pain in my body from just thinking about what would happen if I ate it.

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That sounds like the way a group of boys used to tease me about liking horses back in middle school. Some people never grow up. 

 

When someone offers me something I know I shouldn't have, I just say no thank you. I don't feel like I need to justify why I don't want to eat something. 

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"Even the 'healthiest' processed foods are full of artificial ingredients that can have an adverse effect on you, especially if you eat them all the time."

 

How are you defining "processed food"?  Larabars are processed.  Ground beef is processed.  Chicken sausage (even the organic, free-range kind) is processed.  And plenty of unprocessed foods are quite unhealthy if you eat them all the time.  I'm nitpicking a bit here, but I think there's a tendency to use terms like "processed" as shorthand for "food I think is unhealthy."  

 

A food can be suboptimal but still nutritious.  If people are eating Healthy Choice frozen steamers instead of McDonald's, I think it's a step in the right direction.

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"Even the 'healthiest' processed foods are full of artificial ingredients that can have an adverse effect on you, especially if you eat them all the time."

 

How are you defining "processed food"?  Larabars are processed.  Ground beef is processed.  Chicken sausage (even the organic, free-range kind) is processed.  And plenty of unprocessed foods are quite unhealthy if you eat them all the time.  I'm nitpicking a bit here, but I think there's a tendency to use terms like "processed" as shorthand for "food I think is unhealthy."  

 

A food can be suboptimal but still nutritious.  If people are eating Healthy Choice frozen steamers instead of McDonald's, I think it's a step in the right direction.

 

Ground beef is not 'processed'. It's put in a meat grinder. It doesn't have additives mixed in (at least not good ground beef). To me processed is anything that has ingredients added to it that are not natural, or natural but harmful. ISWF goes into this quite clearly. If you read the ingredients on most of these frozen dinners, you will see what I mean.

 

Sorry, but Healthy Choice is not healthy. One, it's not nearly enough food, protein or good fat. Two, it has many preservatives in it. And three it's full of grains. I know, I used to survive on foods like Healthy Choice, Kashi, Lean Cuisine, etc.

 

Look, I don't walk up to random people and criticize their food. But plenty of people comment on mine because it's 'weird'. We have forgotten what real food is in this country that we don't even recognize it.

 

 

Here is Fooducate on Healthy Choice:

 

Below is the  lengthy ingredient list.

We've highlighted the ingredients one would use at home when preparing this dish. We've underlined additives that we don't think regular folk have at home.

Cooked Penne Pasta (Water, Durum, Semolina [Enriched with Niacin, Iron (Ferrous Sulfate), Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid], Egg Whites), Garlic and Pepper Seasoned Chicken Tenderloin Chunks, Chicken Tenderloin, Water, Garlic and Pepper, Chicken Seasoning [salt, Sugar, Dehydrated Garlic, Spices Including Paprika, Maltodextrin, Soy Lecithin, Chicken Broth [Contains Flavors], Xanthan Gum, Caramel Color, Natural Flavor], Olive Oil, Isolated Soy Protein Product [isolated Soy Protein, Modified Food Starch, Starch, Carrageenan, Soy Lecithin]). Broccoli, Water, Diced Tomatoes, Tomato Paste, Contains 2% or Less of: Full Moisture Parmesan Cheese (Cultured Pasteurized Milk, Salt, Enzymes), Brown Sugar, Onions, Garlic, Salt, Canola Oil, Modified Food Starch, Spices, Potassium Chloride, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid.

While none of the underlined additives is inherently bad for you, their purpose is to provide the flavor and texture of a home cooked dish served straight from the pot. They “cheat†our senses to believe we are getting a better food than we actually are.

Don't know about you, but I want the flavor of my dish to come from the chicken and the veggies, not from an additive called “Natural Flavorâ€.

By the way, On the Healthy Choice website, they'll gladly boast their nutrition info, but the ingredient lists cannot be found. Sneaky and deceitful. The company says it's because product formulations change occasionally. Oh, that's the reason …

 

http://blog.fooducate.com/2010/06/15/how-healthy-are-healthy-choices-frozen-meals/

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As a sweeping generalization, people don't like it when you are different from everyone else.

 

They take it as a judgment even if it isn't. "Why isn't ___ good enough for you?"

 

The best defense is to just smile and maybe say something like, "I'm sorry my eating habits upset you. I didn't intend for that to be the case."

 

And put the bag of bagels in the trash can.

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